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Monday, June 01, 2015

United Hemispheres Magazine | Time Isn’t on Their Side

In what turned out to be baseball’s equivalent of a New York minute, on September 28, 1919, the New York Giants beat the Philadelphia Phillies 6-1 in a contest that lasted only 51 minutes, still a Major League record for a nine-inning game. Almost 87 years later, on August 18, 2006, the New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox played the longest ever nine-inning game, taking 4 hours and 45 minutes—more than five times as long as the Giants and Phils—to complete a 14-11 struggle.

Jim Furtado Posted: June 01, 2015 at 09:00 AM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: history

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 6-1-2015

Pittsburgh Press, June 1, 1915:

Hap Hogan, the Los Angeles baseball leader…was one of the unique figures of the game.
...
One day he was catching at Los Angeles and engaged in a long continued “chewing match” with the umpire, who was having a bad day on balls and strikes.
...
Finally the exasperated umpire warned him. Happy subsided and for half an inning said not a word. Then the pitcher cut the corner of the plate with a fast ball. “Ball,” yelled the umpire. Happy said not a word. He turned slowly, removed his glass eye and handed it to the umpire.

Bravo, Mr. Hogan. If you’re going to get tossed, do it creatively.

Hogan wasn’t much of a hitter, which I guess isn’t a surprise given his eyesight. He was a career .186 hitter in the minors, including his remarkable 1910 season in which he went 32-for-285 with four doubles, no triples, and no home runs. He batted .112 and slugged .126 that year.

Dan Lee is a Big Hunk of Neufchâtel Posted: June 01, 2015 at 08:27 AM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history

Saturday, May 30, 2015

Jerry Dior, Designer of Major League Baseball’s Logo, Dies at 82 - NYTimes.com

It looks like Killebrew to me.

Per his instructions, he drew a generic baseball player. (In interviews years later, Mr. Dior stressed that the figure was not modeled on Harmon Killebrew as many people, including Killebrew himself, believed.) He executed the design in Magic Marker, originally making it blue and green before switching to a patriotic palette.

“It just came to me,” Mr. Dior told The Wall Street Journal in 2008. “I did the rough sketch and cleaned it up a bit, and that was that. I never thought anything about it until I turned on the television and saw it on the New York Mets’ uniforms,” where it was emblazoned for the 1969 World Series.

Jim Furtado Posted: May 30, 2015 at 09:49 AM | 2 comment(s)
  Beats: history

Friday, May 29, 2015

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 5-29-2015

Philadelphia Evening Ledger, May 29, 1915:

Harry Harper...has pitched three games for Minneapolis, and all of them were remarkable affairs in their way. In his first game he struck out 16 batsmen, walked 12, made three wild pitches, and although he allowed but seven hits, he was beaten, 9 to 5. In his second game Harper allowed but four hits, but was beaten, 11 to 1, because he walked 15 men and hit another.
...
Harper’s third game resulted in a no-hit, no-run victory that was one of the most remarkable in baseball. He walked eight men and made a balk, while his teammated erred three times…Thus in three games Harper has allowed 11 hits, but his opponents have scored 20 runs; he has walked 35 men, an average of almost 12 to a game; has struck out 36 men and has made one balk and three wild pitches.

I wonder if he hit the mascot too.

Anyway, Harper figured it out and spent ten seasons in the big leagues, putting up a career ERA+ of 105. He had a reasonably high walk rate (4.2 BB/9) and a lower strikeout rate than you might expect from this excerpt (4.5 K/9), but Harper was a solid MLB pitcher for the better part of a decade. Your move, Brad Pennington.

Dan Lee is a Big Hunk of Neufchâtel Posted: May 29, 2015 at 08:14 AM | 9 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, harry harper, history

Thursday, May 28, 2015

The Accurate RBI Record of Babe Ruth | SABR

The 2012 edition of The Elias Book of Baseball Records states that Ruth holds the top AL mark in four seasons: 1920 (136 RBIs); 1921 (171); 1923 (131); and 1926 (151). This venerable record book is edited by long-time SABR member Seymour Siwoff, president of the Elias Sports Bureau, the official statisticians for Major League Baseball. Meanwhile, MLB.com, the official website for Major League Baseball, states that Ruth was first in RBIs in six AL seasons: 1919 (114 RBIs); 1920 (137); 1921 (171); 1923 (131); 1926 (146); and 1928 (142). The statistics presented on MLB.com are the responsibility of SABR member Cory Schwartz, Vice-President of MLB.com.

Something’s out of whack here: How can such disparate RBI statistics come from two official entities of Major League Baseball?

To address this situation I decided to ascertain the accurate RBI record of Babe Ruth for his entire major-league career (1914–35). The results of my comprehensive and in-depth research are provided in this article.

Jim Furtado Posted: May 28, 2015 at 12:54 PM | 25 comment(s)
  Beats: babe ruth, history, rbi, records

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 5-28-2015

Fungo Tennis, from the Pittsburgh Press, May 28, 1915:

Dan Lee is a Big Hunk of Neufchâtel Posted: May 28, 2015 at 09:31 AM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 5-27-2015

Pittsburgh Press, May 27, 1915:

The Cardinals have signed Roger Hornsby, the fast shortstop of the Denison (Tex.) team. He is the first man to be grabbed from the minors this year by a major league team.

That worked out fairly well for them.

Dan Lee is a Big Hunk of Neufchâtel Posted: May 27, 2015 at 07:49 AM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history, rogers hornsby

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

The Pitcher’s Art « Our Game

The next ball that seemed to bother the batters was introduced by [Henry] McCormick, of the Stars, of Syracuse [winner of 59 games in 1877]. This young pitcher had Mike Dorgan, now of the New Yorks, for catcher. They shut out about all the crack clubs of the country that paid them a visit. The ball he deceived the batsmen with was a raise curve, now used by Radbourn, of the Bostons. He gave his field easy chances; the out-field had most of the work to do off his pitching. I never saw him pitch a ball below a man’s belt. He had perfect control of the ball and a cool head.

Jim Furtado Posted: May 26, 2015 at 11:01 AM | 0 comment(s)
  Beats: history

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 5-26-2015

Milwaukee Journal, May 26, 1915:

“Lime juice is the greatest thing in the world for keeping an athlete’s blood in condition,” said Charlie Huber, the veteran trainer of the Newark Federals.
...
“Baseball makes a man move around fast. That has the effect of churning up his blood and heating it. Lime juice tends to act as a cooling influence and furthermore it aids in throwing off the blood impurities. If a player will drink the juice from one lime daily he never will be troubled with his blood.”

Avoid fried meats which angry up the blood. Keep the juices flowing by jangling around gently as you move.

Also in the news 100 years ago, Charles Comiskey zings his former player Harry Lord, who had just signed with the Federal League: “When I released Lord it was with the idea that he wanted to buy a ball club in his home town. I did not mean it as a blow to the Federal league.”

Dan Lee is a Big Hunk of Neufchâtel Posted: May 26, 2015 at 07:54 AM | 28 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history, lime juice

Friday, May 22, 2015

45 Ruth Pics from Library of Congress

The Library of Congress opened its photo vault and unleashed these great Babe Ruth pics. (from si.com hot clicks)

bbmck Posted: May 22, 2015 at 10:03 AM | 26 comment(s)
  Beats: babe ruth, history

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 5-22-2015

Milwaukee Sentinel, May 22, 1915:

President Somers of the Indians on Friday announced he had discharged Joe Birmingham as manager of the team. Unsatisfactory progress of the club is blamed. No successor has been chosen.
...
[Portland Beavers] Manager McCreedie…stated on Friday that he could not accept the managership of the Cleveland Indians, for which he has been mentioned since Owner Somers deposed Birmingham.

Asked why, McCreedie declared: “I don’t like to say, but there are reasons. I will talk about it further if the managership is offered me.”

Sources say he had a guy on the other line about some whitewalls.

Dan Lee is a Big Hunk of Neufchâtel Posted: May 22, 2015 at 07:52 AM | 35 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history, indians

Predictions of baseball’s demise from 1866 | Baseball: Past and Present

The more things change, the more they stay the same.

Jim Furtado Posted: May 22, 2015 at 07:48 AM | 6 comment(s)
  Beats: history

Cup Of Coffee Club

Of the 17,808 players (and counting) who’ve run up the dugout steps and onto a Major League field, only 974 have had one-game careers.

pthomas Posted: May 22, 2015 at 03:42 AM | 12 comment(s)
  Beats: careers in baseball, history

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 5-21-2015

Pittsburgh Press, May 21, 1915:

Buck Weaver was speaking of the one-hit game Jim Scott pitched against the Mackians Monday: “If I had known that scratch hit of Larry Lajoie’s would have been the only one of the game off Scotty I would have bungled it up so you scorers would have had to give me an error,” he announced.

I don’t buy it. Buck Weaver would never intentionally underperform.

By the way, for whatever it’s worth, Weaver was Jim Scott’s brother-in-law.

Dan Lee is a Big Hunk of Neufchâtel Posted: May 21, 2015 at 09:40 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: buck weaver, dugout, history

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 5-20-2015

Toledo News-Bee, May 20, 1915:

Canadian soldiers in France who want to spend the intermissions between battles in playing baseball will be supplied by American leaders of the game with the paraphernalia which they cannot obtain readily abroad.

The soldiers complained first to their friends and relatives in Canada that baseballs, bats and gloves were scarce in France. Official attention was called, with the result that President Ban Johnson of the American league and others were appealed to.

President Johnson has promised to contribute several boxes of new baseballs.

Classy move. There was very little to smile about in Europe in 1915, so if a few boxes of baseballs could bring a few people some joy, that would have been an easy choice to make.

Dan Lee is a Big Hunk of Neufchâtel Posted: May 20, 2015 at 08:11 AM | 3 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history, world war i

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 5-19-2015

Pittsburgh Press, May 19, 1915:

Baseball, as the kingpin of national pastimes, is going to be crowded for honors in a very short time, if the tennis “bug” keeps working at the speed it has shown for the past couple of years.
...
The national tournaments in tennis are attracting lots more attention now than they formerly did. Now the business men, clerks and thousants of others who play the game are interested in watching men like Norris, McLoughlin and Bundy perform.

Baseball is doomed! Doomed!

Dan Lee is a Big Hunk of Neufchâtel Posted: May 19, 2015 at 08:33 AM | 5 comment(s)
  Beats: doom and gloom, dugout, history

Monday, May 18, 2015

The Only Nolan « Our Game

Ed Nolan was, in sum, the ultimate phenom, the Sidd Finch of his day. No man at any level of professional baseball, before or since, has won 64 games. It was during this year that he won the name “The Only,” which was also applied to his batterymate, Silver Flint, later famous with Anson’s White Stockings. In the major leagues, Hoss Radbourn won 59 for Providence in 1884; John Clarkson and Guy Hecker also topped 50 wins. In the National Association, Al Spalding went 54-5 in 1875 and 52-16 the year before. Harry McCormick was 59-39-2 for Syracuse, also in the League Alliance of 1877.

Jim Furtado Posted: May 18, 2015 at 08:58 AM | 1 comment(s)
  Beats: history

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 5-18-2015

Pittsburgh Gazette Times, May 18, 1915:

A Detroit judge will soon be called upon to decide a difficult question. It was in the middle of a recent ball game. The score was tied. Two men were out and three on bases. Ty Cobb was up to bat.

“Kill ‘em old hoss,” yelled Joseph Stevenson of Detroit. “Knock the hide off her.”

Someone touched him on the arm. It was his wife who had appeared when least expected…Stevenson hurled some uncomplimentary remarks at the umpire, and—“str-r-r-r-ike three, yer out,” was the retort.

Joseph turned, and his wife alleges that with the echo of “strike” in his ears, he struck her right before the fans, and she also went “out” for a few minutes. Therefore she has filed a petition for a divorce, alleging cruelty.

Stevenson’s crime is looked upon by many as justifiable assault.

I can’t even…I don’t even…*sigh*

If the allegation was true, I’m not sure who was more despicable: Stevenson or the people who thought it was justifiable.

Dan Lee is a Big Hunk of Neufchâtel Posted: May 18, 2015 at 08:17 AM | 10 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history

Friday, May 15, 2015

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 5-15-2015

Pittsburgh Press, May 15, 1915:

Herbert Pennock, the youthful twirler upon whom Connie Mack is relying heavily to bring the Athletics up in the race, is a Philadelphia boy, and once pitched for a high school there. While a prep school player he set a strikeout-record of 23 in a single game that stood until this spring, when it was broken by a youth named Kenneth Square, who raised the ante to 24.

So either there was a guy in Kennett Square, Pennsylvania named Kenneth Square, or this story is bunk. I hope it’s the former.

Anyway, Pennock won 241 games and earned a plaque in the Hall of Fame. Kenneth Square may or may not be a real person.

Dan Lee is a Big Hunk of Neufchâtel Posted: May 15, 2015 at 07:52 AM | 12 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, herb pennock, history

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 5-14-2015

Pittsburgh Gazette Times, May 14, 1915:

John Henry, catcher, was absent from the Washington lineup when Griffith’s men faced the White Sox [yesterday]. He spiked himself in rounding first base…and was in a hospital [yesterday] with an ugly gash in his left leg just below the knee. He will be unable to play for a fortnight, it is said.

“You spiked yourself in the…knee? How’d you do that? Heck, I’m not even mad; that’s amazing.”

Dan Lee is a Big Hunk of Neufchâtel Posted: May 14, 2015 at 09:35 AM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, history, john henry

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 5-13-2015

Pittsburgh Press, May 13, 1915:

Danny Claire, a former Western League player, who is serving a term in the federal penitentiary [in Leavenworth, Kansas], pulled a good one the other day. He was looking over some new “roomers” and asked:

“Who is that smooth-faced fellow in the lead?”

He was informed that it was Mayor Roberts, of Terre Haute, who had been sentenced for election irregularities in the Indiana town. Claire commented:

“Well, I’m glad the mayor is here. He can pitch the first ball when the prison team plays its opening game this summer.”

Well done, Danny. Well done.

This is Claire’s second appearance in the link of the day. Back in March 2013, I linked to a story about his three-year sentence after a conviction under the Mann Act. Claire appears to have served the entire sentence, was out of baseball from 1913-15, then returned in 1916.

Dan Lee is a Big Hunk of Neufchâtel Posted: May 13, 2015 at 09:45 AM | 7 comment(s)
  Beats: danny claire, dugout, history

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Snopes.com:  Wally Pipp’s Career-Ending ‘Headache’

In the case of Wally Pipp there was no inopportune headache, no “delightful and romantic story” — just a case of a slumping player who lost his job to an up-and-comer and never got it back. But his replacement was the stuff of legend (the indestructible ballplayer finally felled by a fatal disease), and so he became part of a legend that mixed fact and fiction and grew so large even some of the participants came to believe in its fictional aspects.

I don’t know nearly as much baseball history as many of you; did we know this?

TDF, situational idiot Posted: May 12, 2015 at 08:40 AM | 11 comment(s)
  Beats: history, lou gehrig

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 5-12-2015

Page 32 of the Pittsburgh Press, May 12, 1915:

Dan Lee is a Big Hunk of Neufchâtel Posted: May 12, 2015 at 08:32 AM | 15 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, forkball, history, pitches

Monday, May 11, 2015

The Birth of the American League and How it Transformed the Game – The Hardball Times

Why did the American League succeed where its predecessors (or, in the case of the Federal League, successor) failed? And how did this series of competing leagues driving each other out of business give way to the coalition of the National and American Leagues that form Major League Baseball as we know it today?

Jim Furtado Posted: May 11, 2015 at 10:12 AM | 4 comment(s)
  Beats: ban johnson, history

Primer Dugout (and link of the day) 5-11-2015

Pittsburgh Press, May 11, 1915:

[Bob] Fisher worked the ancient hidden ball trick on Douglass Baird yesterday, but the Pirate coacher was just as much to blame as the recruit. As a matter of fact, this old ruse should be prohibited by law. It is not baseball, and the fans don’t like to see it, no matter who works it.

False. The hidden ball trick is fantastic, and if you don’t want to get tricked, you should pay attention.

Dan Lee is a Big Hunk of Neufchâtel Posted: May 11, 2015 at 08:15 AM | 10 comment(s)
  Beats: dugout, hidden ball trick, history

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